The Process of Coaching Confidence

December 8, 2016
VMD Staff

Brian Faulkner, Bsc (Hons), BVM&S, CertGP (BPS), CertGP (SAM), MBA, MSc (Psych), MRCVS, explains the approaches he takes in coaching confidence.

Brian Faulkner, Bsc (Hons), BVM&S, CertGP (BPS), CertGP (SAM), MBA, MSc (Psych), MRCVS, explains the approaches he takes in coaching confidence.

Interview Transcript (slightly modified for readability)

“With a view to coaching someone and improving their confidence what sort of factors will I consider. Well, there’s two levels, really. If we’re talking about task, we’re talking about a mechanism or a technique. If, for example, we’re talking about a surgical operation, well, perhaps the mechanism I would use for a surgical is watch one, do one, teach one. So that little process of, I’ve seen how it’s done. I’m now going to do it. And I apply skills that I thought were easy when I watched but now I struggle. And then, going on to another level of understanding, I’m now going to teach someone else who to do it. I perhaps have to go to a deeper level of understanding: Why do it this way versus not that way. That’s a task process, and that can apply to sports, to dancing, to arts, to anything where there’s a process and a technique how you’re asking them to do it.

First of all, good coaches are very, very good at understanding where people are on their capabilities and their mastery. But then there’s another level, where actually we look at where are the inhibiting beliefs. What are the confidence-inhibiting beliefs in that individual? Sometimes the only thing holding them back is themselves. The beliefs they hold, the doubt they hold about themselves, and excellent coaches not just coach technique, they actually identify confidence- and performance-limiting beliefs. And they take them out, and they replace them with beliefs that say, I can. Not I can now, but I can learn to get there, beliefs. The growth belief. The belief that you can acquire the wherewithal to get even better. And that’s the basis of knowing where this person is at the moment, and what beliefs we have to instill, as well as what techniques we have to teach.”